I have a bathroom sink and fixture which are about a year old. The drain has worked fine, until about a month ago. Recently, any water I try to hold in the sink slowly leaks out. This is mildly frustrating to our cat who likes to drink from the sink, but terribly irritating to me.

(I'm sure there are names for parts, but I have no idea what they are. Sorry about the following...)

Thinking the problem might be limited travel in the stopper lever (when you pull up the lever thing, at the top of its travel something hits under the sink) I got under the sink and adjusted the set screw and associated pieces so it was all shorter. Now when I pull the drain up, it is no longer klunking against something (apparently that was the set screw hitting the porcelain) so as near as I can figure the only thing stopping the drain from moving is definitely the stopper fitting into the drain. Yet water still slowly drains from the sink.

What else can I adjust? There seemed to be a lot of horizontal/rotational play in all the drain control parts under the sink; could that be the problem?

1 Answer 1


Sounds like a bad O-Ring on the stopper.

Here is a good picture for reference.

Drain assembly

To remove the stopper, you'll have to remove the retaining nut at the back of the drain body. Once that's removed you'll pull the pivot rod out, this will allow you to remove the stopper.

Now that you have the stopper out, visually inspect the rubber gasket around the bottom of the plug (just under the chrome part). If the gasket is worn or cracked, you'll have to either replace it, or the entire stopper.

If you take the stopper with you to the hardware store, somebody there should be able to help you find what you need.

To put it all back together, put the stopper in the drain, insert the pivot rod (so it interacts with the stopper), then tighten the retaining nut back down. You can make minor adjustments by loosening the set screw that holds the lift rod to the clevis, and adjusting how deep the lift rod goes into the clevis.


Don't over tighten the retaining nut, or you could find that you won't be able to move the lift rod.

  • Ooo, I'll check that. Thank you! (And I knew there were names for all those parts; we should keep that drawing handy some place.)
    – Scivitri
    Nov 17, 2011 at 17:56
  • 2
    Some stoppers do not require you to remove the pivot rod, but merely sit on top of it or have a twist-lock slot.
    – Kevin Reid
    Nov 18, 2011 at 22:33

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